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The Two-Way
6:31 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Neil Armstrong 'Doing Great' After Heart Surgery

Neil Armstrong last November at the U.S. Capitol, when he and the other astronauts from the Apollo 11 mission were awarded Congressional Gold Medals.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 8:06 am

There's word from the wife of first-man-on-the-moon Neil Armstrong that he's "doing great" after cardiac bypass surgery on Tuesday, NBC News reports.

And that's good, tweets second-man-on-the-moon Buzz Aldrin, because he and Armstrong have "agreed to make it [to] the 50th Apollo Anniv in 2019."

Armstrong turned 82 on Sunday.

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The Two-Way
5:47 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Jobless Claims Dipped Last Week; Still In Range They've Been In All Year

There were 361,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, the Employment and Training Administration says. That's down 6,000 from the week before (that previous week's total was revised up by 2,000).

Claims have stayed in a range between 350,000 and 400,000 all year. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, has also varied little: it's low this year has been 8.1 percent and the high has been 8.3 percent.

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The Two-Way
5:34 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Even As Rains Ease, Disaster Grows In Philippines; 2.1 Million Affected

From a rooftop in a Manila suburb today, residents watched water flow through flooded streets.
Jay Directo AFP/Getty Images

The numbers keep rising in the Philippines, where monsoons have overwhelmed Manila and other areas.

According to the country's disaster response agency

-- The number of people affected by the devastating rains, flooding and landslides has grown to 2.1 million, up from 1.2 million on Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
5:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Assad Names New Prime Minister; Fighting Continues In Aleppo

As Syrian President Bashar Assad today chose a replacement for the prime minister who defected earlier this week, there were conflicting reports about just what's happening in the key northern city of Aleppo.

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Sports
5:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Olympic Preview: Decathlon Medals To Be Awarded

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 5:43 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

At the London Summer Olympics, it's one star-studded 200-meter race down and one to go - today. American Allyson Felix won the women's 200 last night and was part of a U.S. track and field medal-winning binge. The Americans took seven medals at Olympic Stadium, helping push the Americans past arch-medal rival China in the overall race.

Not that anyone's counting, right, Tom Goldman?

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Business
5:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

How Other Networks Compete Against Olympic Games

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 11:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NBC's coverage of the London Olympics is a ratings hit - which can present a problem for other networks looking to lure viewers, especially those dedicated to broadcasting sports. John Ourand is a media reporter for Sports Business Daily, and he's been checking to see what else is on.

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Business
5:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Retailers Go For Gold By Evoking Olympic Games

More than 20 percent of online retailers have referred to the Olympics in their promotional materials in recent weeks. But unless they're official sponsors, they can't directly use trademarked Olympic symbols or even the word Olympics. So many have had to get creative, using language such as "go for the gold," "podium" or "world-class" to catch the attention of fans.

The Two-Way
4:32 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Done In A Day: China Wraps Up Murder Trial Of Once-Prominent Politician's Wife

Gu Kailai during today's trial at the Hefei Intermediate People's Court. (Screen image from Chinese TV.)
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 6:10 am

  • Frank Langfitt on 'Morning Edition'

As we said two weeks ago, China's state-controlled media had already concluded that Gu Kailai was guilty of murder even before any sort of a trial.

Today in central China the wife of once-prominent politician Bo Xilai got her day in court.

Literally.

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Religion
4:08 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Blurry Glasses Are A Solution To An Age-Old Conflict

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 5:48 am

Conservative men from many religions demand that women dress modestly so the men can avoid feeling tempted. Some ultra-Orthodox Jewish men in Israel are selling special glasses that blur men's vision so they can't see women clearly.

Participation Nation
4:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

A Pet Project In Atlanta, Ga.

Samantha Shelton of Furkids, an Atlanta-based animal shelter.
John Slemp Courtesy of Furkids

Originally published on Tue August 14, 2012 9:59 am

Samantha Shelton has made it her mission to rescue homeless pets. Furkids, the organization she founded 10 years ago, operates one of the largest no-kill animal shelters in Georgia, caring for more than 600 homeless cats and dogs every day.

Furkids has placed more than 7,000 animals into permanent homes.

"Animal overpopulation in Georgia is an epidemic," Samantha says. To combat that problem, Furkids spays or neuters every animal; many day-to-day operations are carried out by more than 400 volunteers — adults and children.

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Sports
4:01 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Internet Surfers Have Fun With Gymnast's Scowl

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 5:49 am

U.S. gymnast McKayla Maroney was disappointed when she took silver in the Olympic vault competition. A photographer snapped her wearing the medal around her neck and a big scowl on her face. That photo has now been Photoshopped on to all sorts of other pictures on the Internet.

Middle East
3:55 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Israel Monitors Egypts Call To Modify Treaty

Israeli soldiers look at their Egyptian counterparts from their side of the border Wednesday at the Kerem Shalom border crossing, where an attack by Islamist militants on Sunday killed 16 Egyptian soldiers.
Tara Todras-Whitehill for NPR

Originally published on Sun August 12, 2012 6:44 am

Israel is welcoming Egypt's military efforts to stamp out Islamist militants in the Sinai following the recent border attack there that killed 16 Egyptian soldiers. The Jewish state has long been concerned over the situation in the Sinai, where there's been an upsurge in violence.

But calls in Egypt to modify the peace treaty with Israel — allowing Egypt to strengthen its security in the Sinai — has also led to concern in Israel.

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Asia
3:45 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Chinese Court Hears Murder Case In One Day

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 5:03 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:36 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Olympic Bodies: They Just Don't Make Them Like They Used To

Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Tue August 14, 2012 9:55 am

The Olympic Games seem to celebrate the extremes of athletic physique — from tiny gymnasts to impossibly huge shot-putters. But why are they shaped that way?

We've put together an infographic that explores how athletes' bodies have changed over the last century, and the role physics plays in each event. Here on Shots, we're taking a look at some of the athletes featured in the graphic.

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Dead Stop
12:50 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Uncovering Secrets Buried At A Neglected Cemetery

Volunteers have been collecting grave markers like these and trying to figure out where they go.
Maggie Martin NPR

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 8:07 am

At most cemeteries, hearing weed cutters and lawn mowers trimming grass around graves would seem normal enough. But at Lincoln Cemetery in Montgomery, Ala., these are the sounds of progress.

Lincoln Cemetery was established in 1907 for African-Americans. But with no one in charge of the cemetery or keeping up with burial records, abuse, vandalism and neglect became rampant and the cemetery is in disrepair. Grass and weeds grew three feet high. People picked apart old, crumbling graves and took bones of the deceased.

And no one is quite where people are actually buried.

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First And Main
12:24 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Complications, Contradictions In A Fla. Swing County

Sofia Martinez, 40, is a registered nurse in Plant City, Fla., who supports both the DREAM Act and Republican Mitt Romney, who says he would veto it.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 5:17 pm

As the presidential election nears, Morning Edition has begun a series of reports from an iconic American corner: First and Main. Several times in the next few months, we'll travel to a battleground state, then to a vital county in each state. In that county, we find a starting point for our visit: First and Main streets, the intersection of politics and real life.

Sofia Martinez was a kid when she began what you could call her life on the road.

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Planet Money
12:22 am
Thu August 9, 2012

The Building That's In Two Countries At Once

Hans Hover has one foot in Germany, and one in the Netherlands.
Robert Smith NPR

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 11:43 am

Zoe Chace and Robert Smith are reporting from European borders this week. This is the first story in a four-part series.

A metal strip on the floor of Eurode Business Center marks the border between Germany and the Netherlands.

On one side of the building, there's a German mailbox and a German policeman. On the other side, a Dutch mailbox and a Dutch policeman.

The building was supposed to make it easy to work in both countries. But it's also a reminder of how the European dream isn't yet a reality.

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Movie Interviews
12:21 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Watch This: Lynn Shelton's Eclectic Mix Of Favorites

Lynn Shelton first gained recognition for her 2009 film Humpday. She is known particularly for encouraging actors to improvise on set.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 11:21 am

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Environment
12:19 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Building For Birds: Architects Aim For Safer Skies

Architect Guy Maxwell holds a printout of his proposed design for the new Bridge Building at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 10:07 am

Second of a two-part series. Read Part 1.

Modern architecture's love affair with tall glass buildings takes a toll. Every year, millions of birds crash into glass windows in North America.

These collisions may seem like an intractable problem. But in New York City, an architect is trying to find a solution.

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Planet Money
7:01 pm
Wed August 8, 2012

Should We Tax Olympic Prize Money?

U.S. gold medallists pose on the podium after their world-record 4x100m medley relay final.
Clive Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 8, 2012 9:28 am

Slate's Matt Yglesias writes:

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